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Here is what we think is the only comprehensive record of pubs and beerhouses within the Coventry city boundaries going back as far as available records allow. This is an ongoing project so contributions, corrections or additions to this archive, especially anecdotes, photos and media are most welcome. Feel free to contact us for a pint and a chat anytime.

The Griffin

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NAME GRIFFIN
ADDRESS 122 GOSFORD STREET
THIS PREMISES HAS BEEN KNOWN BY DIFFERENT NAMES DURING ITS HISTORY FROM TO KNOWN AS
1720 PARROT AND GRIFFIN
1772 1851 GRIFFIN
1868   SIR COLIN CAMPBELL, CAMPBELL
  2011 SCREAM, IT'S A SCREAM
2011 present PHOENIX
The griffin is a fabulous monster, supposedly the offspring of the lion and the eagle. Since it represented the attributes of the noblest animal and the king of the birds, it was much used on coats of arms. Families called Griffith or Griffin have been especially fond of using it.

In a marriage settlement of June 1720 Joseph Ash, Coventry beer brewer, settles this pub on his son, Joseph Ash junior and Bridgett Sturgess. The name was then the PARROT AND GRIFFIN. By 1773 when an auction was held on the premises, JCM 15/2/1773, it was referred to as the GRIFFIN. It is mentioned again as the GRIFFIN in a mortgage document dated 1789 and that name remained until 1868 when the name changed to the SIR COLIN CAMBELL after the 1st Baron of Clyde (1792-1863)

In the 1980's it was a 'large popular Victorian pub recently modernised' and 'a popular pub particularly with the students from the nearby Polytechnic'.

In 1995 a cellar was found behind the Colin Campbell pub. This cellar was actually set back from the historic street frontage, apparently behind the building which people would see as they walked along the street. It was dated to 1380 - 1410, the hatday of such cellars in Coventry, but had been un-roofed and filled in during the nineteenth century. The location of these cellars, almost shoe-horned in, might suggest that as a staus symbol they were sought after, but that their construction might be too disruptive to dig under existing buildings. The cellar under the Sir Colin Campbell contained a west window: on that plot there was evidence of non-ferous metalworking, so a west window would allow work to go on indoors, even in bad weather, late into the afternoon, making use of the afternoon light. It would also ventilate the cellar if it was being used for work rather than storage. All of this appears to preclude its use as an alehouse at that date.

In the 1920s the pub was a main venue for jazz in the city and this continued to the 1970s. In the 1990s the name was shortened to the CAMPBELL and in 2011 became the PHOENIX. This was also known as SCREAM or IT'S A SCREAM for a while, after the Scream pub chain, part of the Stonegate Pub Company.

Note that William Bray was also a brewer, presumably on the premises. After 1850 this pub only appears on the ten-yearly census, not in any directories, as it had become the SIR COLIN CAMPBELL

Known Licensees at the GRIFFIN are;
1841 Johnathan Bray
1845 - 1851 William Bray brewer & victualler
1861 George Robinson victualler & whitesmith

Known Licensees at the SIR COLIN CAMPBELL are;
1868 William Graham
1871 Sarah Graham
1874 - 1879 Thomas Preedy
1881 - 1905 Edwin Wall
1909 Mrs H. Wall
1911 - 1929 Samuel Eggington
1931 - 1932 W. L. Eggington
1933 - 1936 J. E. Tyler
1937 - 1940 P. R. Suffolk
1982 Anthony Smith

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